TVLine's Performer of the Week: Sara Ramirez

129340_1872A new feature in which we spotlight the past week’s shining star

THE PERFORMER | Sara Ramirez

THE SHOW | Grey’s Anatomy (ABC)

THE EPISODE | “Run, Baby, Run”

THE AIRDATE | December 13, 2012

RELATED | Exclusive: Patrick Dempsey Talks Grey’s Anatomy Series Finale

THE PERFORMANCE | Sara Ramirez knows how to navigate a dicey storyline (the Callie/Erica romance, the musical episode, etc.), so it doesn’t surprise us that she’s kicking major butt with the current Arizona-as-amputee arc. Nonetheless, we were taken aback by the depth, humor and restraint she brought to this week’s episode, in which Callie stopped being polite and started telling her wife — played by Jessica Capshaw, also rising to this storyline’s challenges — to “suck it up and stop whining and start living.”

In a lesser actor’s hands, the speech (which you can read in its entirety here) could’ve come off as selfish, insensitive grandstanding. But with Ramirez, Callie expertly straddled the line between furious — over their whole lives being “about that leg” — and fearful, that the intensity of her words may harm Arizona more than help her. And anxiety has rarely been better illustrated than in the seconds after she concluded her lecture, when she took a deep breath, pursed her lips and shot her wife a subtle “Don’t be mad at me!” glance. Arizona wasn’t mad. But we were — not at Callie, but about Ramirez. Well done.

HONORABLE MENTION | New Girl‘s underrated Jake Johnson, for making Nick’s extreme emotional baggage and premature old man grumpiness somehow sexy and endearing as he decided he wanted to make a go of it with Angie.

Which performance knocked your socks off this past week?